Judith “Judy” M. LeBlanc, Ph.D.

Judith M. LeBlanc, Ph.D. (Judy), a renowned psychologist, teacher, and special education researcher, passed away peacefully on Friday, November 24th, 2023, at the age of 87, surrounded by her closest friends and adopted family.

Judy was born in Beaumont, Texas, on January 3rd, 1936. She graduated from Beaumont High School and received her B.A. in Psychology from Southern Methodist University, her M.A. in Psychology from Kansas State University at Pittsburg, and her Ph.D. in Developmental and Child Psychology from the University of Kansas.

She was a Professor at the Department of Human Development and Family Life of the University of Kansas (now Department of Applied Behavioral Science), where she served as Co-Chairperson. Her research positions include Director of the Edna A. Hill Child Development Laboratory, Director of the Institute for Research in Early Childhood Education of the Handicapped, and Associate Director for International Development of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Research in Life Span Studies.

She traveled extensively, gave presentations and addresses worldwide, and published numerous journal articles, chapters, and books. She was a reviewer for the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and an active member of the American Psychological Association and the International Association of Behavior Analysis.

Judy considered her most significant achievement the work she did with Centro Ann Sullivan del Peru (CASP), a special education research and training center in Lima, Peru, where she served as a consultant for over 30 years. At the center, she developed the Functional Natural Curriculum, an innovative teaching approach that has changed the lives of thousands of students with different abilities, and which is being used in many other centers throughout Latin America.

Her many awards include the Outstanding Contribution Award for International Development in Behavior Analysis from the Association for Behavior Analysis and inductions to the University of Kansas Women’s Hall of Fame and the Women in Behavior Analysis Hall of Fame.

Judy was preceded in death by her parents, Eunice and Clifford LeBlanc, and her brothers, Tommy and Cliff LeBlanc. Judy is survived by her adopted family, Liliana and Alonso Mayo, as well as countless close friends in Lawrence, Kansas, Lima, Peru, and all around the world.

Judy’s family and friends would like to express their most heartfelt appreciation to Neuvant House of Lawrence for their care and support in her last years of life.

In lieu of flowers, Judy requested memorial contributions to Center Ann Sullivan International (CASI), the non-profit organization she founded and presided over for many years that continues the work she started in Peru. Donations can be made online at https://www.en.annsullivanperu.org/donate, or by check made out to “CASI” to:

The Trust Company of Kansas

Attn: Center Ann Sullivan International (CASI)

730 New Hampshire Street, Suite 205

Lawrence KS, 66044

10 Condolences

  1. Carolyn Olson on November 28, 2023 at 11:31 am

    It was such a pleasure to know her at Neuvant house. Her smile was contagious and I enjoyed conversations with her.
    Carolyn Olson

  2. Steve Fawcett on November 28, 2023 at 4:28 pm

    Dear Liliana and friends, I am so sorry for your and our loss.

    Judy was a wonderful colleague and trusted friend. Her professional work benefited countless individuals and families.

    Her sense of humor and kindhearted ways brought smiles and joy.

    Her life was a model of science in service of humanity. Thank you Judy for all you gave us.

  3. Toni McCalla on November 29, 2023 at 2:12 pm

    My deepest condolences Liliana and Alanso. I am so sorry for your loss. Judy was a very special person.

  4. Eli Peschiera (Centro Ann Sullivan del Peru) on November 30, 2023 at 10:45 am

    A tender hug to Liliana, Alonso, Holly, Brandom, and everybody who was so close to Judy. She was one of my mentor and amazing friend. She will be in my heart and memories for the rest of my life. God bless you Judicita.

  5. Ruth. on November 30, 2023 at 4:44 pm

    The short time I got to know you Judy was enough to tell of a lifetime full of good deeds to all that you met.
    We shall really miss you Judy.
    Hugs to your family and friends.

  6. Yemi on November 30, 2023 at 4:48 pm

    A big hug to Lili, Alonso, Holly, Brandon. I am blessed and feel very honored to have met and learned a lot from Judycita, my Great Teacher and wonderful Friend, who helped me form and grow as a person and professional in important moments of my life… listen to me, say a word to me make me reflect and make me smile… they made me keep moving forward and I continue to do so because I always have you present in my heart and thoughts… Thank you very much for the great legacy that you have left us all at CASP! Rest in Peace, Judycita!

  7. Charlie on December 1, 2023 at 12:43 pm

    …¡Hey Judy. Yes, you are right!…

  8. Sheri and Jasmine Coleman on December 2, 2023 at 12:23 pm

    My condolences to Liliana and family. I had an exceptionally good experience with Judy and Dr Mayo 17 years ago. I appreciated the opportunity to gain wisdom from this dynamic duo. Judy will be miss. SIP
    Sheri and Jasmine

  9. Cátia Walter on December 3, 2023 at 4:16 am

    My hugs to Liliana, Alonso and Holly! Judy will always be present in our minds, in our hearts and in our attitudes towards people with different abilities. I am very grateful to my dear “Mama”, who I had the honor of being able to affectionately call her. Judy leaves her legacy and we will continue to follow in her footsteps. Gracias Mama! Saudades!

  10. Gladys Montalbetti on December 30, 2023 at 5:54 am

    Un abrazo Liliana y Alonso. Recuerdo llegar al Sullivan hace 33 años con un diagnóstico incierto y mucho miedo. La dra Judith (así le decíamos ) siempre estaba observando, estudiando anotando mentalmente , dando pautas guía. Respeto, calidad de vida y esperanza eso fue lo que transmitió en mi. Honro su profundo compromiso con nuestros hijos y su fuerza para seguir adelante y siempre encontrar una Luz en el camino. Gracias Judith ! Tus enseñanzas fueron la base para educar no solo a mi hijo mayor sino a sus hermanos!!

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